A Brief Meditation for the Month

April 2018

In his epistle to the Romans, the apostle Paul wrote to believers, words that have been a source of spiritual encouragement to many of the Lord’s dear people, when they have found themselves bewildered or confused, by certain events or situations confronting them in their lives. He wrote with real personal confidence: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Rom. 8:28). Paul was no spiritual novice when he penned these words. He had been serving Christ for more than twenty years, throughout which he had learned just how true this fact is. He knew what he was talking about from personal experience. Paul was not proffering an untested but interesting theory. He wrote: “we know.” His confidence was based upon experiential knowledge of how wisely and wonderfully God rules, and over-rules all events in the lives of his people, even to bring good out of evil on many occasions.

One outstanding testimony to God’s sovereign over-ruling wisdom in adversity, is from a much tried and afflicted Old Testament saint — Joseph. In the presence of those who were responsible for a great deal of pain and hardship in his life, he could say, without any spirit of anger or revenge towards them, “But as for you, ye thought evil against me: but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day…” (Gen. 50:20). Isaiah the prophet reminds us of the immutable fact that “The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” (Isaiah 14:24). Even the best of the Lord’s dear children can be so short-sighted at times, failing to hear the One who is in control, reminding them, “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending.” (Rev. 1:8). They become anxious or distressed because they can only see the present, forgetting that for the One who is ordering every detail in their experiences, the past, present, and future are all one. He knows the end and the outcome from the beginning. The Psalmist reminds us, “The counsel of the Lord standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations.” (Psalm 33:11). If we can take hold of these eternal truths by faith, then we will experience the personal peace assured us — “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” (Isaiah 26:3). The Devil is a master at discouraging the tried people of God. If he can distract them to focus their minds only upon their present and visible problems, they may be so overcome with fear and foreboding, that they become spiritually impotent. Moses had many reasons to be afraid, but we are told that he overcame his fears: “By faith…not fearing the wrath of the king:…he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.” (Hebrews 11:27). This is the real secret of peace in life’s trying and testing experiences — keeping our eyes, by faith, firmly fixed on our sovereign Lord who makes no mistakes, but works “all things,” perfectly together for our good, even when we ourselves cannot understand or rationalize what is taking place or happening to us.

When the trials of this earthly life are ended, all the glorified saints, will be able to joyfully testify in the presence of their Saviour, their wise and sovereign Lord; the angelic hosts, and the redeemed saints, “He hath done all things well.” (Mark 7:37).

G. G. Hutton.